When life gives you crumbs

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positive thinking - feed the birds

Sometimes upsetting things happen.  That’s the way things are and we can’t avoid them.  We can however make things better.

The other day I had a confrontation with a person who was quite nasty to me.  I was extremely upset afterwards and sat staring into space, totally focused on the incident.  I couldn’t concentrate on anything else.

After a while my phone alarm went off.  The ringer is an upbeat song.  I decided to stand up and dance, shaking out the negativity that my body was holding from the incident through my fingertips.  At the end of the song, I felt a lot better and I also realised that I was thankful that this is my problem rather than anything else.  In fact I felt blessed.

This thought process completely turned my mood around and I was able to get on with my day.

If it wasn’t for the song breaking into my reverie and choosing to dance it out, I may have dwelled on my problem for the whole day.  By shaking it out, I changed my mood.

I hope that you find a way to feed the birds when you get crumbs.

With love
Eve

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But on all the other days…

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perception - charlie brown and snoopy

People spend a lot of time worrying about things that they can’t control.  They also perceive things in a way that often makes their lives harder (as in the above cartoon).  Both Charlie Brown and Snoopy are telling the truth but which one of them lives a happier life?

I’m not saying that stress doesn’t exist (far from it) or that if we deny our difficulties our lives will be better….. no, what I’m suggesting is that we acknowledge our problems, feel the feelings, if necessary cry, journal, punch a pillow (or whatever safely works best) and then either find some sort of solution or look for the positive or blessings in the situation and focus on those.

There are always positives in a situation even though it may not seem like it at the time.  If you can’t find any, ask a friend, family member or coach that you trust to point them out to you.

What you think about is where you are.  Choose where you want to be and be there.  It requires you to change your thinking though which may take time.  Be gentle on yourself.

You’ve got this

Eve

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p.s. I also send this blog out weekly by email which includes a quick health tip and some good news (as opposed to bad news).  If you would like to subscribe please email info@evemarks.co.za

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The Peach and the Pear

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peachYesterday I was sitting eating a bowl of fruit for breakfast.

The first bite of the pear was lovely.  I tasted that real pear flavour and felt the grainy pear texture.  After that bite I was staring into space thinking about everything that I could think of, things that I had to be doing, things that I had to say to people and it was filling my mind.

Before I knew it, the pear was finished and I hadn’t even noticed eating it which was quite disappointing because it was really a beautiful pear!

I sliced into my cling peach next. I noticed the colour – at least two different shades of orange.  At that moment I decided to eat the peach consciously.

Sonotice-dr-seuss I stopped thinking about everything that has to be done and I ate my peach with concentration.  It was sweet and juicy, delicious, the colours so bright.  I was suddenly struck by the miracle of it.  This peach is amazing!  It has been plucked off a tree!

I marveled at how the world and everything in it has been created with such beauty and functionality.  Wow.

All that for a peach that I took the time to notice.  I encourage you to try this sometimes and don’t stop at fruit, take notice of people too.

I wish you a beautiful day.

Eve

One small step or one giant leap

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purpose-one-small-stepYou can spend all your time wishing for something but unless you actually put a step into motion nothing will happen.

It all starts with imagination which is the beginning of something possible happening. After the idea you will need to have the intention of making it happen.

Intention though is not enough on it’s own because an intention without action is just a daydream.

Whatever your goals are, let them be realistic.  It’s better to set a goal to exercise once a week than in your excitement saying you will exercise every day because small movements forward are much more likely to be followed through.

Know yourself when you set your goals.

In the Power of Purpose course (starting next Tuesday in Johannesburg) we go into depth with goals, dreams, intentions, action, what’s stopping us and how to change that.  We also look at deeper intentions and purpose for our lives.  I highly recommend it.

Wishing you a week of taking small steps in a positive direction.  I would love to hear from you so let me know how it goes.

 

Instant Disease

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illness-spots-on-pillow

I heard a true story a couple of years ago about a man and his son who had inhaled dry pool chemicals when servicing their pool.  The chemicals damaged their lungs and they spent months in rehabilitation trying to recover from this disaster.

So…. Yesterday I was living* for a swim and spent the entire day looking forward to it only to find that when I finally had the opportunity there were piles of chemicals on the steps.  So being a person who tends to look for solutions I asked some advice and then went to scoop the chemicals into a bucket of water for later use.

While scooping the chemicals up I had a fleeting thought that maybe standing in a cloud of chemicals was probably not that healthy and then I smelled some chlorine fumes off the top of the water.  Of course having suddenly remembered the story of the man and his son I immediately started to worry that I had damaged myself.

My mind started working overtime and I created an “instant disease”.  I started coughing intermittently and I even felt a bit tender in my lungs when I breathed.

This is the power of the mind!

Fear can bring on symptoms even when there’s nothing wrong!  It reminds me of one of my favourite sayings:  What we focus on expands.  The more we think of something the bigger it gets.

So how did I change my mind?

I checked in with myself to see if I had really been injured and tried to think about it logically.  All I had smelled was the chlorine that was in the water but because I was standing so close it smelled quite strong.  Then I asked my most logical friend (my husband) for his take on it – I can actually laugh now thinking of the look on his face – he assured me I hadn’t done anything to endanger myself.  After that I did the most important thing which is to make a choice to believe that I am safe.   Once I did that and repeated the words to myself a few times, I went on to do something else and forgot about my “symptoms” which of course disappeared.

I am so in awe of the power of the mind and how it can take us either way depending on what we choose.

By the way I decided not to swim until the chemicals had dissipated so I had a cool shower instead.  I could have just done that in the first place but then maybe I wouldn’t have had anything to write about 😉

Wishing you a wonderful weekend.

Eve

*I always say I’m living for something instead of dying for something because quite honestly I wouldn’t want to die for a swim 😉

The Blind Spot

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judging-before-you-assume-ask-squareDo you ever wish that you would have just kept quiet and asked questions rather than jump to conclusions?  Whenever I jump to conclusions it doesn’t end well.

I think the reason for this is that we judge a situation by our perception or experience of it from our point of view and how can we know what is really going on unless we are in the other person’s mind?

So many disputes take place because of this blind spot which is basically misunderstanding.  We can think we know why the other person does what they do but it’s not based on reality, it’s based on guessing.

gavel-3I have regretted talking too soon so many times in the past that it has almost become a silent rule to ask first.  I hate making the mistake of judging someone wrongly and then having to apologise afterwards.  Do you ever feel this way?

I can feel the feelings of anger welling up and my tongue about to spit out it’s defamation when suddenly I stop myself because I notice the signs.  The signs are my feelings of anger.  I just know I’m going to make a mistake if I don’t ask first.

Once it’s out.  It’s too late.

So that ‘s what I do (most of the time).  I ask first.  I’ve learned my lesson.  I hope.

With love
Eve

Feeding the Baboons

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fears-feed-the-fearsWhen holidaying near wild life you will see many signs saying “please do not feed the monkeys / baboons” and you still see people doing it.  There are notices saying that if the baboons get used to human food they become dangerous as they will do anything to get that food when they want it, yet people still feed them.  The notice says that when the baboons get dangerous they will be shot and yet people still feed them.  It’s very upsetting.

Feeding your fears is something like feeding the monkeys.  The more you feed your fears the more fearful you get and the less you are able to cope in various situations.  Your fears start to take over and before you know it you are living according to your fears.  Rational thought goes out the window and anxiety is the order of the day.

The acronym for F.E.A.R is False Evidence Appearing Real.

baboonWhat this means is that what you think is going to happen seems as though it is really going to happen and therefore you believe it to be real.  The mind doesn’t know whether it is real or not so it starts to send off hormones to alert the body of danger.  However, if you think about it carefully you will notice that most of our fears are unfounded.  Most worries never happen.

If we focus all our energy on what we fear, it could eventually come true because what we focus on expands and if we are living our fear then it can start to become real for us.

If you think you are broke (even if you have enough money to survive), you will always feel broke.  I met a woman once who was complaining about her lack of money and material wealth.  When I was invited to her house for a party I couldn’t believe the size of the house!  Seriously, it was one of the biggest houses that I had seen in the area.  However, in her mind she didn’t have enough and she feared that she would never have enough and so even though she was living a life of abundance she didn’t see it for herself and always felt “poor”.

People have fears about all sorts of things and it is actually like living in a prison.  They can’t move forward or even sideways.  They just stay in one place, afraid of what the future will bring (and the future could be tomorrow or in an hour’s time).

At one stage I was really petrified of the security situation in our country.  I had been the victim of crime previously and I couldn’t sleep at night.  I spent each night fearing the worst.  A good friend of mine suggested that I look at the facts.  The facts were we had various security measures in place so I wrote down a list of all these security measures and after that I felt a lot better.  I use that tool now and again when I need it.

Fear can appear real but it’s nearly always about the future and we can’t know what the future will bring.

So instead of feeding your fears, look at the facts and focus on that instead.

With love

Eve